WorldSBK Estoril | Redding holds his nerve to resist Razgatlioglu Rea in Race 1

Scott Redding makes an unconventional soft tyre choice work wonders for him as he holds on for a second consecutive WorldSBK win in Estoril

Scott Redding - Ducati WorldSBK 2021

Scott Redding has reduced the gap to Jonathan Rea at the top of the WorldSBK Championship standings with a smartly-judged performance in which he soaked up race-long pressure from Toprak Razgatlioglu.

The Briton started second behind pole man Jonathan Rea, but after aggressively muscling his way through on the Kawasaki man into the tricky Turn 1 right-hander, Redding wouldn’t be headed again thereafter.

Indeed, his turn one pass would prove pivotal because he’d opted for a less conventional soft tyre - usually reserved for the 10 lap Superpole Race sprint - and recognised he’d need to plot an early escape so those behind stressed their rubber too.

Top 10 Best Sportsbikes of 2021 |

As it happens, at no stage would Redding be able to shake off the attentions of Razgatlioglu but with the Ducati easily able to fend off the Yamaha down the home straight on a circuit with few other passing opportunities, he held on.

His cause was helped during the closing stages by the advance of Rea, who kept Razgatlioglu preoccupied in the last few laps in a fight for second, allowing Redding the breathing space to secure back-to-back wins.

A distracted Razgatlioglu did enough to repel Rea for second, helped in part by some superb hard braking defences into Turn 1, with the Kawasaki man forced to concede.

Indeed, it was an unusually unsettling race for such a master tactician as Rea. The race began badly when, despite getting a good start, he was boxed by Redding and Razgatlioglu to leave him third, before a ballsy move by Michael Ruben Rinaldi on lap two appeared to catch him by surprise.

Though it took only two laps for Rea to work his way back past Rinaldi, the gap was almost two seconds to the front by then, giving him just a bit too much work to do to both catch and pass the duo ahead.

Garrett Gerloiff paid for a bad start that dropped him from fourth to ninth before recovering to a distant fourth by the chequered flag, ahead of Rinaldi, while experienced pair Chaz Davies and Michael van der Mark recovered from 15th and 14th on the grid respectively.

Their causes were assisted by crashes for Alex Lowes and Eugene Laverty just seconds apart when they were running a strong fourth and eighth

Alvaro Bautista spared some Honda blushes on a tough weekend in eighth, ahead of ex-MotoGP man Tito Rabat and Andrea Locatelli rounding out the top ten.

The final points paying positions were taken by Axel Bassani, Leon Haslam, Luca Mahias - who ran fifth initially before slipping back - Tom Sykes and Kohta Nozane.

2021 WorldSBK Estoril | Race 1 Results

2021 WorldSBK Estoril | Race 1 Results | Round 2 / 13
PosRiderNat.WorldSBK TeamSuperbikeTiming
1Scott ReddingESPAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R22 Laps
2Toprak RazgatliogluTURPata Yamaha by BRIXXYamaha YZF-R1+0.877
3Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasakI ZX-10RR+0.915
4Garrett GerloffESPGRT Yamaha WorldSBKYamaha YZF-R1+9.518
5Michael Ruben RinaldiESPAruba Racing DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R+13.638
6Chaz DaviesGBRTeam GoElevenDucati Panigale V4 R+17.777
7Michael van der MarkNEDBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M1000RR+19.316
8Alvaro BautistaESPTeam HRC HondaHonda CBR1000RR-R+20.185
9Tito RabatESPBarni Racing TeamDucati Panigale V4 R+25.625
10Andrea LocatelliITAPata Yamaha by BRIXXYamaha YZF-R1+27.772
11Axel BassaniESPMotocorsa RacingDucati Panigale V4 R+30.349
12Leon HaslamESPTeam HRC HondaHonda CBR1000RR-R+35.722
13Lucas MahiasESPKawasaki Puccetti RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+35.885
14Tom SykesGBRBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M1000RR+36.887
15Kohta NozaneESPGRT Yamaha WorldSBKYamaha YZF-R1+45.434
16Jonas FolgerGERBonovo MGM ActionBMW M1000RR+46.472
17Isaac VinalesESPOrelac Racing VerdNatura KawasakI ZX-10RR+51.132
18Eugene LavertyIRLRC Squadra CorseBMW M1000RR+1m >
19Alex LowesGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasakI ZX-10RR+1m >
20Loris CressonESPTPR Team Pedercini RacingKawasakI ZX-10RR+1m >
DNFChristophe PonssonESPAlstare YamahaYamaha YZF-R1Crash
DNFSamuele CavalieriESPTPR Team Pedercini RacingKawasakI ZX-10RRCrash